Centrelink’s residency requirements
When applying for an Age Pension you must meet residency requirements, but as YOURLifeChoices member Kavita has realised, what these are can be confusing.
On your website it says, under residency requirements for an Age Pension: "Applicants must have been an Australian resident for a total of at least 10 years, five of which are in one continuous period (periods of residency in countries which have an International Social Security Agreement with Australia may count.) Under what circumstances do periods of residency in other such countries count? I am a dual Australian-US citizen, but so far have lived only eight years in Australia. I am wondering if my years in the US will count towards the 10-year requirement, since the US does have a Social Security Agreement with Australia.
A. The exact details of International Social Security Agreements vary from country to country, but usually means that if you have resided in a country which has an agreement with Australia, the time you have spent there will count as continual residency.
In some instances you may receive part of your pension from each country in which you have resided. This usually means that you will receive a top-up pension from Australia, which is dependant on how much you receive from overseas social security payments.
You can download details of the International Social Security Agreement with the United States of America from HumanServices.gov.au.
I recommend that you read this and then make an appointment to see a Centrelink Financial Information Services officer to discuss your individual circumstances. You can make an appointment by calling 13 2300.
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